I hope you are excited as I am to get going on American Rose. I think that the subject of Gypsy Rose Lee is absolutely fascinating, so when I found this book and was given the opportunity to share it with you all, I was thrilled. Not only is this the true backstory to a well-loved musical, but vaudeville is a part of stage history as well, so this should be really fun. It’s great to be back to a biography after having so many novels in a row, don’t you think?
As always, we will only discuss through the pages mentioned in the previous post. So please DO NOT DISCUSS PAST CHAPTER 6 IN THIS POST.
True to form, I am including some discussion questions to get us going. Feel free to answer one, some, or all of the questions listed here. However, if you feel so inclined, break away from my instruction and discuss something completely different! This is an open discussion, free to anything in the first six chapters of American Rose.
1. Did you read the author’s note? Do you usually or not? What did you think of Karen Abbott’s first words? Of her description of the characters before diving right in?
2. How much did you know about Gypsy Rose Lee before reading this book? Just the musical? More? Less?
3. This book, though a biography, often reads like a novel. It’s exciting and flowery in it’s language. I like that so far, do you? Also worth noting is that it’s definitely not in order and tends to jump around, talking about different “characters” or people who I assume will appear significant in Gypsy Rose Lee’s life. Do you like that style? Or would you prefer it to go more in order?
4. What was your reaction to finding out the Louise was put up for adoption? Did those quotes just kill you, or am I the only one who cried a little?
5. How does what you’ve read so far compare to what you know of the musical Gypsy?
6. Do you have a favorite quote in the book so far? I’m having a hard time choosing.
7. What questions do you have going forward that you’d like to remember as we discuss future chapters?
This discussion is open from today until next Sunday (October 6th, 2013) at which point we will begin discussing the next section. Because not all the book winners (and others) have their books yet, we’re going to keep it at another 5 chapters so everyone has a chance to catch up.
For next week, please read through CHAPTER 11.